after dinner sneeze

a lot of g says, t says

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Dinner #5 and Wine #6: Rose’s Luxury and 2014 Macdonald (Oakville)

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t says: Ok – it was date night super-XL edition. We got g’s parents to come and babysit P so we could take off for the day AND night to explore DC (and sleep without a baby monitor on!)! During the day, we took the opportunity to walk around Georgetown – an area of DC that sometimes seems “so far” away from us (we live in Noma). As we walked toured the cute shops, I was stopped in my tracks by a sign advertising some of “the best” chocolate in the world … and on the inside: chocolate chip cookies!!

Look at the height of these cookies!

Ok … $4 for a cookie is a bit insane – even by SF standards. But hear me out! I’m no stranger to making chocolate chip cookies. I value a cookie with a firm edge, a soft center, and lots of height with a sweet, fluffy, “cakey” quality juxtaposed against tons of borderline-bitter-dark chocolate. The limiting factor for me has always been the baking properties of the chocolate. While I want to bite into largest, softest chocolate chunks suspended in cookie, the larger morselscompromise the structural integrity of the cookie while baking. Now, I’ve used those fancy Valrhona fevres – they’re delicious – but I failed on numerous attempts to get the height I wanted because the chocolate would destabilize the cookies, causing them to collapse in the baking process, resulting in really wide, flat cookies. No height! So when I saw these, I was impressed by the height of the cookie. And when I finally bit into one, I was surprised at just how much soft, delicious, dark chocolate there was in there. Instantly, this cookie has catapulted itself amongst the finest from SF, including Tartine Manufactory. Also, the rest of the chocolate shop looks fantastic, right on down to the variety of single origin drinking chocolates. Definitely going there again …

So back to the main event! Dinner at Rose’s Luxury.

Dinner, Party of 2, March 2020. So we braved the in-person waitlist line at Rose’s and nabbed ourselves a dinner at the bar. (We killed time at an awesome wine shop called Decanter down the street – more later!). Before we knew, we were seated at the upstairs bar and enjoying ourselves.

(Warning: not my photo!) We brought with us a bottle of wine. Whhaaattt? That’s right -$20 corkage, baby! We had to take advantage. And given that we were without p that night, we opened up something special – 2014 MacDonald Cabernet Sauvignon from To Kalon vineyard in Oakville. The owners of the label, Alex and Graeme MacDonald are wonderful, down-to-earth people, a refreshing contrast to the world of high-end, snooty wineries that share the similar cult-y status that this wine possesses. Furthermore, the wine was brilliant. Already fairly open for such a young wine, it greeted us with bold, bright, violet-laden red-and-blackberry fist to the mouth, with a silky, moderate finish. While powerful, it had a minerally element that kept it lighter than a usual Napa cab – it was so slick we drank the whole bottle (we’re small, so that’s a tremendous feat!)
We started off with the cacioe pepe bread. It’s exactly what you imagine – that real deep cheesy flavor with pops of lightning black pepper on a canvas of squishy, buttery bread – so good that we can’t believe we’ve never had something like it before.
This dish was on the forgettable side. I forget what the components are, exactly, but insert a seared fish with a simple slaw (with fruit!) to provide an acidic contrast, and here it is. Moving on …
Maybe the last dish was so forgettable because it was completely overshadowed by this badass cauliflower concoction. Now at baseline, I’m only “so-so” with cauliflower. I’ve had awesomeness in the form of Zahav’s cauliflower, and a lot more lows (i.e. every time I try to cook it at home). This was amazing. There’s something about the way they ?roasted? the cauliflower and how it balanced with the sweet-and-sour golden raisin and the truffley yogurt sauce – I really can’t explain it in words because as I type it right now, it doesn’t sound good at all. Just take my word and order it.
Oh broccoli fusilli. This one is one of those “obvious” wins. Perfectly cooked pasta, broccoli, a little bit of ?jalapeno? for a subtle kick, gouda for a salty richness, and breadcrumbs for texture. It tastes as good as you would imagine. Not very surprising or avante-garde in any way – but it checked all the boxes nicely.
So up until now, we have 1 “easy” win, 1 right-out win, and 1 forgettable … Could Rose’s pull out just one more eye-opening dish to push them from a “it’s good but we’ll try someplace else next time” to a “it’s good and I can’t wait to come back?”. Well this is it. The brisket. It’s so simple. Meat. Bread. Slaw. Horse radish. But HOLY CRAP. This is one of those dishes where the chef can’t hide. There’s no fancy tweezer-dependent presentation. There’s no fancy ingredient (e.g. caviar, truffle, foie). Here’s a slab of meat – do you like it? Answer: yes. It’s quite possibly the best-cooked brisket I’ve ever had. It was incredibly tender, but not so tender that you’d forget it’s meat (because then it’d be tofu …). Incredibly well seasoned and flavorful. I ate it by itself like a steak. Yes the other parts were delicious (I mean that bread was like 95% butter – I don’t even know how it maintained it’s form as bread!) – but there was a singular star of the show!
We finished the meal with our glasses of wine and a take on banana pudding that was simple-but-effective. It reminded me of the salted caramel budino at Barbuzzo in its no-frills approach, with the total ending up being more powerful than the sum of its parts.

So where does Rose’s fit in our personal list of DC restaurants? Well, it wasn’t a flawless meal, but what really clinched it for us was the quality of the food combined with the very comfortable atmosphere. Don’t confuse that with “casual” atmosphere (although it was casual), rather, the feeling that the entire restaurant was comfortable with what it was. The servers (who were incredibly warm and accommodating), the fixtures, the ambience, – it was all part of a “package” that felt at peace with what they were trying to do: serve delicious food (with a moderate combination of novelty and “classic”) in a very normal, approachable atmosphere at a not-ridiculous price. No expense accounts. No “bros”. No power moves. Just people being normal. So we place Rose’s near the top of the list of places we’ve tried in DC. We’ll gladly try it again – it’ll be a combination of trying out a new menu and ensuring we have the time to deal with their day-of reservations policy. And of course: we’re happy they let us bring our own wine if we want!

Written by afterdinnersneeze

16 March 2020 at 10:50pm

Posted in Happenings

Dinner #4 and Wine #5: American Son and 2014 Ayoub (Brittan Vineyard)

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t says: I miss BYO’s. There was a time, back in the day when we lived in Philadelphia, that we loved frequenting amazing BYO’s. Mercato, Melograno, Sotto, Bibou, Fond, Modo Mio, Django (reaching WAY far back!). When we landed in SF, we were forced to realize that BYOs are not the norm at all. Actually, the corkage at some places was purposefully prohibitive (e.g. $50). Now that we’re in a new town, I had to investigate: how much is corkage? It’s actually a question that doesn’t seem to get much traction in DC. It’s not advertised anywhere. None of my dining friends knows. It’s apparently not something that anyone thinks about?

Well … I ask the hard questions: “How much is corkage at your restaurant?” And when American Son said “$25”, I was like “Oh! That’s it?”. Lady must have thought I was crazy. So we had our next dinner date ready to go!

Party of 2, Weekend, February 2020. After reading about American Son, we were pretty excited. The story is just so cute and cuddly, how could we not fall in love? Just look at the letter that’s on every menu:

Does your heart not just melt?

So we were excited for the food that followed:

We started off with some “obvious” favorites. You know – the kind that any good restaurant would have on the menu. The Brussels sprouts in the foreground were perfectly cooked (i.e. probably deep fried to crisp deliciousness), and accompanied with an assortment of togarashi sauce, “everything bagel” seasoning, and “leafy green things” that rounded out the profile with a bit of tang, a bit of nuttiness, and some fresh green. A no-brainer of a dish (i.e. there’s no way that this composition could be bad!) that really delivered!
In the background is their take on ricotta on a zatar cracker. Our criticism: give us more ricotta! Let us taste the cheese! The rest of the seasoning and accompaniment were good enough, but give us the cheese, damnit!
The seared sea scallops (background) with fennel and leaks were expertly prepared. Absolutely no qualms with execution there. Meanwhile the rabbit rigatoni in the foreground did not disappoint, with its walnut gremolata – an interesting combination that brought some earthy tones. Two very nicely done dishes that deserve applause for being able to hit several flavors at once that marry well.
And finally, you see our dessert and our wine for the evening. The dessert was probably the best take I’ve had on a S’more since the deconstructed s’more dessert of the Philly Talula’s Garden days. The scorching of the marshmallow was key. Meanwhile the Ayoub … I need a separate paragraph for Ayoub …

So what can I tell you about the wine? First off, Ayoub wines have always been amazing for us. Mo (the owner) just can’t make a bad pinot. He can make unusual pinots on occasion, but in general, they follow a pretty similar pattern: very tight and borderline abrasive in the first couple years after release, then they settle a little bit and give you what I can only describe as an Oregon Pinot at 11. But don’t think of it as over-extracted southern California pinot – no. This is still cool weather Oregon – it’s just that the flavors are all throttled WAY up, with bright red cherries and a hit of blackberry and licorice. This is followed by a burst of tongue-watering acidity and that Oregon dirt on a finish that lasts for seconds. The 2014 Ayoub Brittan Vineyard that we drank above still has plenty of life, for sure. I may have to rejoin his list because I just can’t find his wines in stores!

So back to the restaurant. Did we like it? Yes. It was a delicious meal, for sure. The service was courteous. I will say, however, that we wished for a little more soul. Go back and read that letter. That warmth and honesty should permeate the place. The ambience should be intimate and warm, not stark, chic, and full of windows. The food was indeed delicious, but perhaps in a way that was “safe”. I am hopeful for a little more. Make me feel the warmth of that letter. The food clearly shows a very good, talented chef – one that can combine flavors and appeal to a broad audience; but I’m just hoping that next time I’ll get to feel what it means to be the “American Son”.

Written by afterdinnersneeze

5 March 2020 at 11:15am

Posted in Happenings

Wine #4: 2014 Tor “Propietary Red Blend”

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t says: We needed some wine. Stat. It was a long week. p was getting over a cold. We were getting over p getting over a cold. Wine! Now! And it better be really good, damnit!

2014 TOR “Proprietary Red Wine”

I only turned 35 once – and we celebrated by going to Napa, where g allowed me free reign to buy whatever wine I wanted. Living in the moment, I kept my purchases “reasonable”: I bought this bottle. And now, as I write this, I wonder, “did we open it up at an occasion worthy of remembering my 35th Birthday?” Yes. Yes we did. Because the wine was the occasion.

And Tor did not disappoint. This mix of Cabernet Franc, Petite Verdot, and a smidge of Cabernet Sauvignon gave us an experience that was quite unlike any of its individual components. Smooth as a baby’s bottom, it crept in and pounced like a tiger, offering deep dark plush black fruits – thinking cherry, plum, blackberry. What followed was a subtle hit of dried herb – it reminded me of what I usually get out of California Cab Francs. And then it finished with a little bit of a bitter bite on the finish – not necessarily a tannic drying, but something else – ?licorice? pepper?. Couldn’t put my finger on it. It was a bit short versus Tor’s usual offerings, but offered a nice way to remind ourselves of our “old”, pre-p life. Are there better wines for the money? Sure. But the memories more than make up for it.

Thirty-five was great – but thirty-seven is even better. Cheers!

Written by afterdinnersneeze

22 February 2020 at 8:45pm

Posted in Happenings

Dinner #3 and Wine #3: Thamee and 2014 Lutum Pinot Noir (Bien Nacido Vineyard)

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t says: “Cheater! Two in the same post, but you didn’t have them at the same time! Cheater!” Yea – I’m a cheater. But if I’m also the one making the rules, I might not be an actual “cheater”, right? Something hating the game and not the player …?

We went out to dinner with our new DC friends to Thamee on H St. Boasting Burmese food, I was cautiously excited. Was it going to be like Rangoon (in Philly)? Or Burma Superstar (in SF/Oakland?) The website made it seem “elevated”, but the prices didn’t scream “fancy”. So we just zipped up our blizzard-ready jackets (no, it wasn’t snowing, but we were cold) and braved the Friday night.

Dinner for 4. Friday, February 2020. From the moment we stepped in, we knew that the service experience was going to be amazing. The very pleasant hostess was very accommodating, even though we showed up 20 minutes early. We were shown to the bar and invited to have a drink while we waiting for our table (and the rest of our party). No huddling by the door, bracing ourselves as each cold draft ripped through when anyone opened the door? How civilized!

The drinks we had were a-mazing. I had a vodka-laden mango lassi that was incredibly addictive. I’m surprised I stopped at 1. g’s mixed drink was artfully done – head and shoulders above whatever she had at Kitsuen recently.

As our friends arrived and we took our seats, we ventured a smorgasboard of Burmese food. But what “is” Burmese food? How do you explain it? The waiter did a good job: “it’s a combination of a variety of nearby Asian influences, resulting in a flavor all its own”.

And yet – we took no photos. #bloggerfail. Can’t believe I forgot AGAIN. The biggest disappointment is that the food was delicious! We enjoyed nearly everything, but, as the cuisine was fairly unique, I know my words will fail me, so we’re just going to have to go back, take pics and copious notes. One thing is for sure: the “Ma Jo Tofu” was incredible. I love Ma Po Tofu – and the way this dish recalled that flavor exactly, but then made it deeper, more savory, and then incorporated a cube of ?chickpea? in lieu of tofu … That was my favorite. 100% doing that again.

Also: the wine list was incredibly nerdy (bonus!). The staff continued to be amicable. It was another fantastic restaurant recommendation by our friends – perhaps even better than Emilie’s because this time, the restaurant felt more like an original concept unique to DC. Bravo!

Now for wine #3 (because I’m too lazy for a separate post):

2014 Lutum Pinot Noir (Bien Nacido Vineyard)

This was a “bargain” purchased on one of the last Last Bottle marathons before we left San Francisco. No – don’t take “marathon” literally – there was no running involved. is a flash-sale site that usually puts a different wine on “sale” one at a time. During their “marathons”, they change up the bottle hourly (or even faster if an offering sells out) so you gotta be quick with the trigger finger if you see something you like. This bottle popped up with a rave review and a serious discount (something having to do with the owners divorcing and having to liquidate all the leftover bottles in the cellar?), so I jumped on it. That said, rarely does Last Bottle actually deliver a bottle that lives up to the hype … EXCEPT this one!

This bottle was all the luscious dark/black cherry wrapped up in all the dirty/loamy earth that we love. It was dirrrty. In the best way. It was actually far closer to an Oregon pinot than a California pinot, which traditionally for me, gives off a cough syrup flavor (when over-ripe) or a bitter green, “stemmy” flavor (when extracted too hard) or an alcoholic burn (once again, when over-ripe). As a not-winemaker, I actually have no idea if these are the real reasons why CA pinots taste this way to me – they’re just a guess. Meanwhile, g and I both liked and praise Lutum for producing this pinot that pushes the fruit without being “too much”, while not being afraid to let the earth show. It finished with good acidity, porcelain tannin. Great stuff. And, when I went back to check the vinous review, it lined up pretty well with the reviewer’s palate:
“Hints of earthiness, crushed leaves, dark wild cherries and licorice … this is an especially virile, masculine expression of Bien Nacido.”

Not sure if I agree with ever calling a wine “especially virile” (I mean, really? “virile”?), but I understand what the reviewer meant, even if the language is absurdly dated. We have another bottle of Lutum in the cellar so I’m excited to see where it goes!

So here we are – a bit over a month in and we have done 3 and 3 of our 20&20. Gotta keep up the pressure!

Written by afterdinnersneeze

18 February 2020 at 8:45pm

Posted in Happenings

Dinner #2/20: Kitsuen (& More!)

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t says: We were on fire this weekend! We did a dinner out and a brunch the following morning (although we did bring p with us to brunch).

January 2020, Saturday Dinner. g and I love ramen. And while we were slated to head out to a fine dining establishment somewhere in DC (we’re going to save that one for later), we had a last minute change of plans. Instead, g and I ventured out, sans reservation, to the hip, hot new restuarant/bar Kitsuen. We sauntered in at 7:20pm, and were seated by 7:30 – not bad for a place with some buzz. I will say, however, that starting at 7:45, there were now crowds of folks waiting to be seated. Glad we got there early.

Kitsuen, from what I gather, is more lounge/bar, “but with good food”. But they only have one bar … and they serve ramen at that bar, so it’s being taken up by people eating … so it’s not “really” a bar you can walk up to and grab a drink at. So I’m confused. Maybe they’re still working out the kinks …

It didn’t matter: we were there for the ramen. But I have no pictures of the ramen? Goshdarnit, I forgot, again! Just imagine the standard bowls of ramen everywhere else on this blog and you get the idea. Here’s one:

This is NOT the ramen at Kitsuen …

g ventured the Hakata Tonkotsu, and I went for the Tokyo Shoyu. I’m going to cut to the chase: Toki Underground does it better. There’s a lot that is done correctly at Kitsuen. They used the appropriate shaped noodle for each bowl (the tonkotsu had straight, thin noodles, while the shoyu had some wave to them). The additions were standard. The broth was fine. But nothing really hit you in the mouth. g called it “balanced”. I call it “toned down”. The shoyu was missing out on the deep salty/savory backdrop. The pork chashu lacked the porky salty-sweet that I expected. The addition of the grisel of beef was pointless (it reminds me of how my mom adds a bit of bulgogi to wonton soup – it’s more for the soup’s flavor than for the experience of actually eating the meat, itself). Meanwhile, g’s tonkotsu was … inoffensive. Absent was the creamy/fatty goodness I had hoped for. I thought the noodles could have been a touch firmer. In the end, I think both broths were missing out on another several hours of reduction/concentration, as they had the mouth presence of a chicken noodle soup moreso than a hearty bowl of ramen that a Japanese chef toiled over for hours out of the day. Oh – and neither noodle had that alkaline twang to them – they could have been a standard pasta noodle in terms of flavor.

As for the rest: the karaage was tasty (reminding us of Popeye’s – and what’s wrong with that?) The octopus takoyaki balls were fun, but could have used a bit more octopus. The sake was refreshing and reasonably priced.

So was the meal a failure? Absolutely not. It was fun! We people-watched, reminisced over our previous ramen adventures, joked about how the server had told us they had Japanese wines (they pulled out a bottle of Sonoma chardonnay). It was worth the trip to see if Kitsuen was our speed (it wasn’t – we’re too old). Hopefully, as more people hit up Kitsuen, it’ll free up some space for Toki down the street (where we can engage in a discussion on whether their interpretation of tsukemmen is delicious or improperly constructed or both!)

But the night was not over! On the way back home, we came across Dangerously Delicious Pies. And this time, there is a picture!

Dangerously Delicious Pies

Now this was a place that really struck a chord with us. The theme, itself, is kind of silly: “a bunch of pies”. Hell – “Peasant Pies” in SF had the same theme, and we can agree that that place wasn’t good at all. However, this place was far more legit. All kinds of pies. Whole pies (not personal/hand pies). All right there. In a dive bar setting. With a music venue upstairs. And that key lime pie was delicious! (The other one was the Elvis: banana, PB, bacon was also good.) In this moment, we felt we finally hit upon someplace with a genuine feel. No million-dollar backer, no celebrity chef, no care to create a seen-and-be-seen environment. Just some pie (and we didn’t even sample any of the savory ones!). And music. This is where we’d take some out-of-town friends. Welcome to DC! Have some pie.

And now … brunch. No pictures. No details. Just a directive: Little Pearl is delicious. The menu is super-small, but think of this place as a cafe, not a restaurant, and you’ll understand. Apparently, if you’re a young family in capitol hill trying to eat somewhere actually good with your child but don’t want to commit to a full-on “meal”, Little Pearl is where you go. Now I want to try their dinner!

Written by afterdinnersneeze

29 January 2020 at 9:17am

Posted in Happenings

Leaving Our Hearts in San Francisco

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t says: It’s funny. As “the new guy” at work one question I get asked frequently is “so, where you from?”. The good news is that that the motivation for the inquiry nowadays is different than that I’ve encountered previously:

<Enter flashback …>
“Where are you from …?” “NJ”
“Yea, but where are you really from … ?” “NJ”
“Yea, but where are your parents from …?” :-/ “Still NJ”
<Exit flashback …>

Currently, when folks ask where I’m from, I instinctively answer “San Francisco”. I assume it’s because I think I’m being asked “where did you just come from?”. And while SF is true, I also recognize that we’ve spent less time there than almost anywhere else:
Vineland, NJ = 18 years
Baltimore, MD = 4 years
Pittsburgh, PA = 1 year
Philadelphia, PA = 10.5 years
San Francisco, CA = 3.5 years
Washington, DC = 6 months
So I guess I’m actually still “from” NJ, right?

But man do we miss San Francisco. Sing it Tony Bennett.

So … what’s the point of this post?

Well, after I tell people I’m from San Francisco, I often get asked about how it was (answer: “Awesome!”) and [inevitably] the food (also: “awesome!”). However, as I look at the blog, I realize that we/I kinda fella asleep behind the wheel for our SF time, so I’m going to put all of our best dining experiences into a single post for handy reference (also so we know where we want to revisit in the future).

We ate a lot of ramen in SF – these are our faves:
– Orenchi Beyond – best in the city for pork-based ramen – just make sure you add enough of the add-ons or at least some extra noodles because the base bowl is rather sparse
– Nojo – best in the city for chicken-based ramen – get the one with the whole braised leg in it (and all that lovely burdock! – if they charge you extra for burdock it doesn’t matter – you need it)
– Ramen Yamadaya – best in/near Japantown
– Tsuta (SF) and Nagi (Palo Alto) were two spots we regretfully never made it to :-(
– Mensho was woefully overrated/overhyped
– Ippudo was very consistent for a good downtown ramen spot

‘Elevated’ Mexican: Nopalito (don’t forget to go to Bi-Rite for dessert!)

Contempo-American-but-still-keeping-it-fresh: Statebird Provisions

Pizza: Long Bridge

Korean: Jang su Jang (Milpitas)

Place-you-overlook-because-they’re-always-there: Limon Rotisserie

Place-that-you-keep-thinking-is-overhyped-but-isn’t: Souvla

Easy-get-together-spot-with-kids: Spark

Wine bar without pretense: Ungrafted (can also bring kids)

Casual seafood-and-stuff: Anchor Oyster Bar (may or may not be BYO?)

Classy seafood-and-stuff: Petite Crenn

Brunch: Zazie vs. Plow

So-good-but-you’ll-feel-too-full Brunch: Brenda’s

Best BYO Dinner: Zazie on Tuesdays

Classic Sushi: Kiss Seafood

Modern Sushi: Robin

Takeout Sushi: Sushi Live

Pastas: Flour & Water vs. SPQR

Hot Chocolate: Ice Cream Bar

Chocolate Chip Cookie: Tartine Manufactury (not Bakery)

General Pastries: Neighbor Bakehouse (although B Patisserie is a contender)

Classic Ice Cream: Bi-rite Creamery

Fun Ice Cream: Uji Time

The one that got away: Atelier Crenn

Written by afterdinnersneeze

22 January 2020 at 1:21pm

Posted in Happenings

Wine #2/20: 2008 Poesia (Mendoza, Argentina) [and a bonus!]

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t says: Oof. What a long day! g and I needed a little something special after that week (little did we know that it was about to get a bit more hectic, as p was about to get hand-foot-mouth … again). We ordered up some pizza from We the Pizza, one of our favorites for delivery in DC, put p to bed, and cracked open the bottle on the left:

Left: 2008 Poesia (Mendoza, Argentina); Right: 2018 Petit Bourgeois (France)

I don’t know much about Poesia. I have no romantic stories to go with it. No personal history. It popped up one day on and I pounced on it based on the review that gushed with phrases like:
– “pure, vibrant aromas of black cherry, black raspberry, cocoa powder, graphite and woodsmoke” with a “subtle floral note”.
– “dark fruit flavors are accented by minerals, licorice, fresh herbs and flowers … a fine dusting of tannins and echoing juicy length.”
– “not the most opulent [Poesia] … but may be the most suave and best balanced.”
With words like those how can I resist? Especially because historically, for g and me, Argentinian malbecs come across a bit one-dimensional, so I was thrilled at the idea of a leaner malbec with some bottle age.

It was … not as good as that reviewer’s vocubulary. It was indeed a well-balanced wine – far from the $20 juicy, plump malbecs of our past. Raspberry/framboise with black pepper, cedar, herbaceous tones. However, it ran a bit hot on the finish, and the flavors were a bit awkward – not quite melded together for a seamless experience. Perhaps it’ll integrate with years to come, but I worry about the alcohol, which doesn’t really “settle down” like tannins and fruit do. It was a good to see a not-as-fleshy side of Malbec, and it wasn’t “bad”, but it wasn’t so enthralling that I’d bother to pick up another bottle. We live, we learn [not to trust reviewers].

As now it’s two bottles that haven’t quite gone as we’ve planned, I decided to include an extra bottle with this one. You can see it in the pic above! But it doesn’t count as #3 for our challenge because it’s one of our usual weekday wines. This Sauvignon Blanc (that’s classified as a “Vin de France”, meaning it is an amalgation of grapes from all over the country – which basically means it’s “table wine”) is an example of the kind of wine that I/we like, but would never bring to a party. What the meager 85-point review misses about this wine is the very striking note of petrol (fancy-talk for “gasoline”). It’s such a pronounced note that it’s guaranteed to turn off quite a few people … unless you’re one of those that like it. We like this wine quite a bit, and year-in, year-out, it’s reliable. It’s bright and mouth-watering, and features some combination of citrus and petrol that’s short-lived on the palate – so it’s a great palate cleanser while you’re eating. Seek it out for the experience – we usually have it twice a year because it’s that good. And if you prefer this style of wine to the fat, buttery, rich, vanilla/oaky chardonnays out there, then welcome to the club!

Written by afterdinnersneeze

20 January 2020 at 8:59pm

Posted in Happenings